Thursday, February 21, 2013

Creating Meaning

Since my trip to see the Drawing Surrealism exhibition at LACMA, I have been thinking about Apollinaire's calligrammes, which aren't surrealism proper but are so fraught with curious meaning. They have been talked to death; earnest people make calligrammes for their loved ones all the time. They're the poetic equivalent of Monet, really. But still I love Apollinaire's originals.

They're dark and can be quite nasty, despite their outwardly cheery, pretty facades. The political and emotional messages are fabulously pointed.

As in, how can a horse be "all horribly/dreadfully/terribly"? Think about it. Fantastic. Of course, now thinking about it, it's a juxtaposition of the horse, and a description of himself, his signature. I wish I had that kind of deprecating humor and moxie. I might say it, but I wouldn't write it.

And speaking of the French, I recently discovered a group that has revived the old song tradition that I so love. For some reason, blogger won't let me use accents, which is embarrassing, but they're called the "Tetes Raides." They appeal to the nostalgic nerd in me who idealizes the 30's and 40's. I especially like this collaboration with Jeanne Moreau.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I'm a complete francophile - thanks for sharing!